How to: create Filter on Undelivered Emails in MS Outlook

If you are frustrated with others not keeping their mailbox clean and you are landing up with 10’s to 100’s of undelivered mail notifications landing up directly to your inbox, then don’t worry this post may be useful for you to some extent 🙂 Note: this is not a tool tip, but usage of a very well-known feature of outlook i.e. Rules

Here is a short, simple and clean method to create a filter i.e. a rule for your undelivered emails,

1. Launch Microsoft Outlook (This article doesn’t cover how to configure MS Outlook hence I am assuming you are using Outlook 2010 ad your exchange or outlook profile is already configured where you like rule to be placed, in case you are using other version like outlook 2007 or 2003 then the steps may differ but you can easily figure out the changes)

2. Go to Home Ribbon ad select Rules dropdown, select “Manage Rules & Alerts…”

3. A new window will pop up like below, click “New Rule…”

4. A new pop-up window will appear, select “Move messages with specific words in the subject to a folder” option, click next


5. In the upper portion i.e. Step 1 of the rules wizard window “Select Condition(s))”, keck mark the option “WITH SPECIFIC WORDS IN THE SUBJECT”

6. In the lower portion i.e. Step 2 of the rules wizard “Edit the rule description”, click on underlined value that is highlighted in blue two will be there “Specific Words” and “Specified Folder”. First click on the “specific words” rule description,

7. A Search Text window appears,

8. Type the following words in “Specify words or phrases ….” Window and click ADD button after each phrase as below:

  • mail delivery failure
  • failure notice
  • undeliverable
  • delivery failed

    Note: Any other keyword if you have noticed



9. Click Ok to close the search text window, all search words will appear in Rules Wizard window as below,


10. Now, in Step 2 window, click “specified” folder rule description, Rules and Alerts pop up window will appear to choose a folder.


11. Create a new folder with name as “Undelivered Items” or whatever you prefer (you can also opt for them to be delivered directly to “DELETED Items” to directly delete them, click OK


12. Now you will be back on Rules and Alerts window, select “Undelivered items” and click Ok,


13. Final Rules wizard will look like below, click Finish


14. Now in Rules and Alerts window you can find this newly created rule, click apply and select “Run Rules Now…” option to run it and test it if you have any undelivered notifications in your inbox or any other folder,




Hope you have found this tip useful!



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About the Author: Nitin G

Indian born, trekker, biker, photographer, lover of monsoons. I've been working full time with SQL Server since year 2005 and blogs to post the content aquired during my research on new topics or fixing issues faced by me as a DBA while working in different kind of projects, hope some of my posts may helps others in SQLDBA community. Everything you read on my blog is my own personal opinion and any code is provided "AS-IS" with no warranties!

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